Travel Tip of the Day: How To Access Some of the US’ Best Airport Lounges

American Express Centrurion Lounge at LAS Vegas

American Express Centurion Lounge at LAS

American Express is an advertising partner of JohnnyJet.com, but the opinions and beliefs in this post are those of the author alone, who makes every effort to ensure the accuracy of the information.

How To Access Some of the US’ Best Airport Lounges
The American Express Platinum Card used to be one of my favorite cards. It could get me (plus a guest) into any American Airlines or Delta Air Lines lounge plus all of the Priority Pass lounges. But then American pulled out, and Delta limited lounge access to just the cardholder, and I began to seriously think about canceling my card—and I’ve been a member for a long time!

But after my recent visit to one of American Express Centurion Lounges—exclusively for American Express cardholders traveling through Dallas (DFW), Las Vegas (LAS), San Francisco (SFO) and New York’s LaGuardia (LGA)—I’ve decided to keep my Platinum Card. Here’s why:

The American Express Centurion Lounges
The Centurion Lounges lounges are swank and exclusive! First of all, you can’t get in unless you have an American Express card. Those with Platinum and Centurion cards get complimentary access. Other American Express cardmembers have to purchase a one-day pass for $50 per adult (kids are no additional charge). And:

  • The food is plentiful and great. The menus are created by top chefs, including Chef Dean Fearing, creator of Fearing’s Restaurant in Dallas. They also have an open bar and great service.
  • There are family rooms filled with games and toys.
  • There are showers with L’Occitane products and there are complimentary spa treatments (my favorite). Not sure if they all have them, but the lounge at DFW offers free 15-minute massages (neck, shoulder and back), facials and manicures. You can only make an appointment when you arrive and if you want more than one service, you have to make it after you complete your first appointment. The lounge wasn’t that busy so I had both a massage and manicure.

 

What’s interesting is that even though the American Express Platinum Card comes with a hefty $450 annual fee, it’s actually a great deal when you consider the value of the benefits. For example: Let’s say you apply for the card now and get it by June 1st. That means you get $200 for airline incidentals like baggage, food, and change fees—like every cardmember gets each calendar year.

So that means by the time the card is up for renewal next June, you’ll already have access to the (second) $200 credit for 2016’s calendar year. That’s $400 in total incidentals, compared to the $450 annual fee in the event you don’t end up liking the card (though I highly doubt that will happen if you travel a lot). And that doesn’t factor in all the other perks that come with the card—like the fact that American Express covers your $100 fee for Global Entry (I hope you already have it) if you pay with your American Express Platinum Card. Here are more benefits:

The only negative I could find with the Centurion Lounge is that the agents don’t have access to your airline’s computer reservations, so if you need to check or change flights you’ll have to go to an airport agent.

*Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of the bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities

 

_________________________________________________________________________________

Tried this tip? Let me know in the comments!
Have your own tip? Email it to whitney@johnnyjet.com!
Want to see more tips? Click here for all 407!

Want even more travel tips? Subscribe to the Daily Travel Tip newsletter! All you have to do is sign up for the weekly newsletter by filling in your email address and checking the Daily Travel Tip box in the top-right corner of the homepage.

If you already subscribe to the newsletter, fill in your email and check the Daily Travel Tip box in the same top-right corner of the homepage and you’ll receive an email with a link to update your JohnnyJet.com preferences. On that page, just click the Daily Travel Tip box and Update Profile and you’ll have Johnny’s best tips, straight to your inbox each day. And don’t worry—it’s easier than it sounds!

Johnny Jet

The comments on this page are not provided, reviewed, or otherwise approved by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Rate this post

About the Author

Johnny Jet

I used to be afraid to fly and at times even leave the house! I conquered my fear (long story) and now I travel to 20+ countries a year sharing my firsthand knowledge, tips and deals with friends, family and readers. Please sign up to our free newsletters and tell your friends!

3 Comments on "Travel Tip of the Day: How To Access Some of the US’ Best Airport Lounges"

  1. I’ve not tried these tricks yet, sure will I do it the next time I have to wait in for a flight. Interesting that you’ve written an editorial note to confirm that this is not a sponsored content. Appreciate that buddy.

  2. Don’t forget about the new Centurion Studio in SEA near gate B3! This is a smaller version of the Centurion Lounge. No showers or spa, but the ambiance is worth checking about. The restrooms are also 100x better than the airport public restrooms! The best thing, however, is the ability to bring in a guest with you….something not allowed in the other lounges.
    The other benefit you should note with the American Express Platinum Card, which helps me justify the $450 annual fee, is that you can get 3 additional cards for a total of $175/year. I suggest teaming up with 3 friends or colleagues and each pay $160/year for the card. A Delta Sky Club membership alone would cost you more than $500!! You can’t beat paying only $160 for access to all Delta Sky Clubs, Alaska Boardrooms, AMEX Centurion Lounges and over 150 other lounges that come with the free membership to Priority Pass!!

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.